Sauna sparks fire at Maple Grove fourplex Residents at a townhome fourplex in Maple Grove spent Wednesday sifting through their belongings and looking for salvageable items after an overnight fire displaced about ten people and sent one man to the hospital for minor burns and smoke inhalation.
Authorities believe a sauna sparked the fire in the 10900 block of 104th Place. The fire destroyed one unit and did significant damage to another. The third and fourth units sustained only minor damage and residents are expected to be able to return home this week.
Maple Grove Fire Chief Scott Anderson said 30-40 firefighters from Maple Grove and Anoka-Champlin responded to the fire, which was complicated by weather conditions and some ammunition that was located inside the home where the fire started.
"It was during the thunderstorm, so we had lightening, we had live ammunition going off in the house at the time of the fire, and then the gas meters burned off, so we had flames coming out of the ground where the gas piping was [located]," said Anderson.
The resident of the townhome where the fire originated told authorities he turned on his sauna around 11pm Tuesday and then stepped outside to smoke. When we returned, the sauna room was on fire. The resident escaped through a sliding door in the basement. He was later treated and released for minor burns and smoke inhalation at Mercy Hospital.
Emily Christianson's townhome sustained significant smoke and water damage. Christianson, a 33-year-old teacher, was able to salvage some clothes and a partially melted laptop computer from her place. As she sorted through her belongings, she said she realized the situation could have been much worse.
"The most important thing was everybody got out safely," said Christianson. "I am very lucky."